You are entirely correct that certain troublesome aspects of American life now resemble a tyranny more than that of a free nation.
Authors the late Paul Weyrich and William Lind note with alarm in their book, “The Next Conservatism” – whose subject is a return to the real (as opposed to false type of Bush et al.) conservatism of our forefathers – the increasing militarization of our law enforcement agencies. The TSA is simply the most egregious example. A subtle shift has occurred. Police officers were once known as “officers of the peace,” but are now referred to as “law enforcement officers.” The difference is significant. The former was concerned with maintaining order and community peace; the latter is an active agent of the state, enforcing its eddicts. The rise of paramilitary police forces is linked to the phenomenon of the quasi-imperial government we see in today’s Washington, D.C. In the time of Franklin Roosevelt or Harry Truman, the president had only a small security staff of discrete Secret Service agents, and one could visit the White House and Capitol Building simply by walking in. Today, both are surrounded by military, paramilitary and private security forces. Our government is impenetrable to the common citizen, and as you note, those summoned (not requested, but summoned) to appear before Congress sit below their elected representatives. Symbolism is important – and rulers wishing to display their power over their subjects have long relied on such devices as reminders of who holds the power and who does not. It is readily apparent that we the people no longer command our government or steer the ship of state. Our servants have become our masters. Moreover, it is clear that the government is afraid – afraid of “terrorism” perhaps, but just as fearful of the electorate they are supposed to serve. If this is incorrect, then why are all of those physical barriers and people armed with automatic weapons necessary?
A final signal, if you will, that we are devolving toward an authoritarian or tyrannical state is that our elites and political leaders no longer regard obeying the same laws as the rest of us as their duty. Figures such as Timothy Geithner, who head some of our most powerful financial institutions, are tax cheats and flout the law in many other ways. Laws, rules, and regulations are only for the great unwashed, the “little people.” Favored classes of people, effectively above or outside the law, are characteristic of lawless and tyranical states.
Very good points of course, and there are so many more symbols that go too much unresisted. Just one quibble: Janet Napolitano is not the head of the Transportation Security Agency, but of that agency’s parent behemoth, the Department of Homeland Security, whose very name is emblematic of tyranny.
Mr. Berger. Tell me more about Norwegian prisons and Swedish nursing homes.
Belial, your point is well-taken. As far as this writer is concerned, DHS should be abolished as soon as possible. It is a clear and present danger to the liberties of Americans, as was shown quite well about a year ago when Tea Party activists began showing up on “terrorist” watch lists at DHS. Why? They were quoting the founding fathers and flying the Gasdan flag. DHS is also just another layer of hyper-expensive and ineffective govt. bureaucracy in a town that already has too much of it.
Troublesome. Very troublesome.
Can you add something to cheer me up?
Cheer you up? Well, consider this.
The Tea Party movement is only a weak foretaste of tactically adept popular sovereignty. The technology revolution and the U.S. Constitution give the American people a brighter future than any other population on earth. Electoral politics, which should never have been more than a small fraction of our citizen duty, must be sidelined for a more active sovereignty, given the fetid condition of the entire D.C. pool.
The key offering planned by AmericaAgain! Trust is the AmericaAgain! Indictment Engine(TM): the first mechanism whereby the creator parties of America’s Supreme Law can finally begin to enforce the terms of that compact, in the highest criminal courts of the sovereign States (purposely capitalized, as the framers used to do), against the criminal members of Congress, severally.
Just the most egregious example of countless criminal arrangements by Congress: its counterfeiting concession, perennially renewed for almost a century to a cartel of crime families operating under the euphemistic label ‘Federal Reserve’.
Article I Sections 8 and 10 of the U.S. Constitution are written at a 7th grade comprehension level; the serial violation of America’s highest law every year for a century, is not in question.
Thus Congress is not remiss, it’s criminal. The AmericaAgain! Indictment Engine(TM) tracks and scores members of Congress according to their own state criminal codes, so that We The People can bring felony charges in STATE high courts against our own member of Congress, right at home, for violating our State criminal laws (also happening to violate their oath of office and the U.S. Constitution).
For the past 150 years, any attempt to rein in a corrupt member of Congress was always shunted under ‘federal matter jurisdiction’ into oblivion.
In fact, some will cite Congress’ “removal jurisdiction” law, allowing federal actors on state charges to immediately move the case to their own courts. A virtual Get-Out-Of-Jail-Free card. However, imagine the political maelstrom when it’s tried by half a dozen perps in Congress simultaneously!
AmericaAgain! Trust is moving deliberately, but within the next few years we hope to have a HQ team at AmericaAgain! Liberty Labs(TM) and our Legal Section, empowering dozens of state prosecutors and millions of average Americans to finally do what Madison and Jefferson suggested the creator States do: apply remedies to federal corruption, at the *higher* (State) level.
We The People have been slow to apply Madison and Jefferson’s Principles of ’98 but the time may come when “Indictment Engine duty” will be like jury duty — the apex sovereigns over American government, finally acting the part.
The D.C. Leviathan, controlled for centuries by the mercantilist party of Hamilton and Clay, is about to be pulled by an even tighter leash, to its constitutional cage.
As it is, Marxist bureaucracy is lumbering along as a dinosaur in the tar pit, blinking its tiny eyes in a new technological sun.
“Change we can believe in” may come sooner than many think.
For a more in-depth explanation of the rudiments of our planned mechanism, see http://www.TeethForTheTeaParty.com or read my book http://www.amazon.com/This-Bloodless-Liberty-David-Zuniga/dp/1609572157/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1307595841&sr=8-1
In conversation, I repeatedly and annoying use the phrase “Department of Fatherland Security.”
Dr. Berger, I read all of your stuff while earning my Ph.D. in sociology back in 1992. Wish I could have studied under you. Great piece. By the way, these symbols of tyranny are perhaps even more evident in the classroom, though it is more intellectual tyranny than political (at the moment)).
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